Fritz Fends Off Foki In Paris, Keeps Turin Hopes Alive

  • Posted: Oct 31, 2022

Fritz Fends Off Foki In Paris, Keeps Turin Hopes Alive

American books second-round clash against Murray or Simon

Taylor Fritz dug deep to overcome a typically resilient Alejandro Davidovich Fokina on Monday in a Rolex Paris Masters first-round clash that carried extra meaning for the American.

Fritz trailed by a break in the first set and let slip a 2-0 lead in the second as Davidovich Fokina threatened an early upset against the 2021 quarter-finalist at the ATP Masters 1000 event. The ninth seed raised his level at key moments to resist the Spaniard’s charge, however, converting five of 10 break points to clinch a 7-5, 6-2 victory in 90 minutes on Court Central.

“[I’m] really happy, he’s a tough person to play against,” said Fritz after the match. “He’s got weapons on both sides. He’s extremely quick as well, so there’s nowhere you can really play with a lot of safety. He makes a lot of crazy shots and he’s beaten me the past two times, so definitely good to just get out there, play a solid match, and get through it.”

With the win, Fritz kept alive his hopes of qualifying for November’s Nitto ATP Finals for the first time. The 25-year-old is currently eighth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin and he must reach the championship match in Paris to have a chance of leapfrogging Felix Auger-Aliassime or Andrey Rublev into a qualification spot for the season finale.

“Right now I’m just focused on kind of playing myself into the tournament,” said Fritz. “I feel like any time this year that I’ve won a couple of matches into a tournament, then I’ve done well. So I’ll just try to focus on these early rounds.

“Turin is still in the picture, obviously, but there’s not much else I really could have done. I won Tokyo… Felix has played really, really well, so he deserves it, but I am going to try to steal his spot this week for sure.“

Auger-Aliassime is a potential third-round opponent for Fritz, but the American will next turn his attention to a second-round clash against 2016 champion Andy Murray or home favourite Gilles Simon.

ATP WTA LIVE | Follow the Pepperstone ATP Race To Turin In Real Time

Source link